Zero To Hero Challenge

Zero to Hero: DAY 30: THINK BIG PICTURE

So here we are at the finish line …

Today’s assignment: Extend your brand, think about a bigger strategic plan for promoting your online presence, and set a goal for the next 30 days.

finish-banner-b5b76ad3b552cdccc33ae15ff586956b

Continue reading

Zero to Hero: DAY 29: EDITORIAL CALENDAR

Penultimate task!

Today’s assignment: Think through your idea editorial calendar. Bonus: develop a regular feature for your blog.

Having a regular postings schedule helps the writer and the reader. The writer has a bit of discipline and ensures that there is always content to be written about, and the reader knows when to be looking out for what interests them. Its a win-win.

Continue reading

Zero to Hero: DAYS 27-28: CATCH UP (SORTA)

A bit of a twofer today!

Day 27: Revisit a Task and a Post

Today’s assignment: Pick your favourite of all the tasks we’ve done so far, and revisit it. How can you continue to grow? (Bonus: revisit a post that’s been on your mind, and make the edits you’ve been thinking about.)

Yeah, you see, I looked at this one yesterday and wasn’t feeling it. I left it for a bit and still wasn’t feeling it. This morning … still wasn’t feeling it. And nothing is grabbing me still. Don’t get me wrong – there’s tasks I’ve done that I feel have improved my experience of blogging, and I enjoyed messing about with the widgets and whatnot but … *shrug*

Day 28: Build on Your Popular Content

Today’s assignment: Find the post that has received the most views, likes, or comments, and write a related follow-up post. 

Genuinely, I’m not bothered by or motivated by views, likes or comments. So far in this past month I’ve published a tiny amount (if any) of posts that relate to what this blog was set up for: genealogy, gardening, photography. Is that my fault? Could I have somehow shoehorned a post about my great-grandparents wheatfarming in the midwest into one of the Z2H tasks? Possibly (to both questions).

However, looking at my stats a few things are clear. The vast majority of unique visits rose dramatically on those days I posted a link in the Z2H daily forum thread and dropped off on those days I didn’t. By far the most Liked pages are those dedicated to a Z2H task – very few people seem to go from there to other non-Z2H posts. That either says something about the people who visit or something about the other posts I have here. But see earlier comment about not being bothered by my stats.

I’m not being bitter, or even ungrateful to those who have visited, commented and followed, I’m just sharing my thoughts and feelings on the matter.

I can understand the underlying point of this task: obviously you want to give people more of what they like and less of what they don’t. But what if your blog has a specific, or niche, angle or covers the things that you want to talk about? What if I want to do several posts about the osteology of the ctenosauriscidae – which would interest only a handful of people in the entire world? Would that be more or less worthy than, for example, discussing the latest excrescences of the Kardashians – which would possibly show up on more Google searches and produce more traffic?

Just something to think about when reviewing stats and visitors.

Flying South …

Poorly Drawn Lines was never so true ...

Poorly Drawn Lines was never so true …

Zero to Hero: DAYS 24-26: CATCH UP

Another catch-up post due to travel and being internet-free for the last few days. All very #firstworldproblems, I know.

So let’s have a meander through the last three tasks …

Continue reading

Zero to Hero: DAY 23: PUBLISH A ROUNDUP

Right. For the last time this week (I shan’t be home until Monday – so expect another ‘catch-up’ post …), here’s the latest Z2H task.

Today’s challenge: Publish a roundup post that links to posts on at least three other blogs, and tell us why you love the posts — and why we should read ‘em.

A compendium of links and why I love them … Right then … I can do that … And I’m this excited about doing it.

tumblr_mlwmqnqo3s1qlzc82o1_400

Continue reading

Zero to Hero: DAY 22: POST FOR (ANOTHER) BLOGGING EVENT

I’m a bit behind on yesterday’s task:

Today’s challenge: Find a blogging event and throw your hat into the ring.

The Daily Post has a directory of blogging events, categorised by photo, writing, general, niche and one-time events. My first reaction is to always go for a creative writing ‘exercise’. However, this time I decided to go with something a bit different …

(more…)

Zero to Hero: DAY 21: BUILD ON NEW-TO-YOU FORMAT; LET THE WORLD KNOW

Oh good … another one that I already do on a regular basis.

Today’s assignment: publish a post inspired your post from Day 19, and publicize it on one or more of your social networks.

I should have some kind of mantra: I will be positive; I will be positive; I will be positive.

Continue reading

Zero to Hero: DAY 20: ADD A NEW PAGE

I don’t want to sound smug or ungracious, but I have been using basic Pages for a while, as you can see up at the top of the page. Therefore today’s task seemed pretty much a non-starter.

Today’s assignment: add a new page to your blog.

However, not to be closed to the potential of new things, I did add a child page to my About Me page and added a contact form. This is here.

I don’t think I’m receiving enough traffic and questions to warrant a FAQ page, or explicit custom menus. But perhaps at a later date.

Zero to Hero: DAY 19: NEW-TO-YOU FORMAT

Its nice to be back in the swing of Z2H after a few days away!

Today’s assignment: publish a post using a format you’ve never used before.

Although I have shared photographs before, they weren’t done using the Photo format – just a ‘standard’ format with a photo lumped into it. I don’t plan on sharing a lot of videos, audio clips or plain quotes or the other formats mentioned (besides, my current Theme doesn’t seem to support them all).

The thing that annoys me about the Photo format is that you can’t automatically add it to a particular Category – you have to go into the Dashboard and edit it afterwards. Neither does it appear to Publicise in the way that Text posts do (at least, its not showing up on either my Facebook timeline nor my Tumblr dashboard). Its all very well banging on about “the breadth of tools available”, but it would be nice if all the tools worked on all the Themes in the same sort of way.

Anyway, this is the photo that I shared – taken a year ago, right here in France, just a short distance down the track from my parents’ house.

I have a bit of a thing about strange-shaped trees. I have a few other photos – one I call Cry of Cthulu tree and one Tree of Souls.